The 23 creatives for this year’s Screen Diversity Showcase have been unveiled after being selected by a panel of independent industry judges.
Hosted by the Equity Foundation, the initiative is designed to promote a platform for diverse voices across writing, directing, and performing.
More than 450 applications were received for this year’s program, which is the second of its kind to be held.
In a statement, the judges said they “truly valued” the opportunity to watch all the work that was submitted.
“There were so many wonderful actors bringing the scripts to life and we were especially blessed to hear the actors’ life stories and why they wished to have this opportunity,” they said.
“It was so special and inspiring to be a part of this process.
“We all very much look forward to casting actors who entered the Screen Diversity Showcase in future productions.”
The selected creatives will collaborate on five distinct projects, all to be filmed as five-minute proof of concepts.
The program will culminate with all participants being flown to Sydney to film and edit their projects, before exhibiting them at the Showcase event at the Sydney Actors School later this year in front of key decision-makers in the screen industry.
The showcase is supported by Screen Australia, MEAA, Australian Writers’ Guild, Australian Directors’ Guild, Showcast, Sydney Actors School and Casting Guild of Australia.
MEAA equity president Jason Klarwein says it was an honour to shine a spotlight on some of the “incredible” emerging artists in the industry.
“I know it was a rigorous judging process and the selected applicants are immensely talented,” he said.
“I cannot wait to see what they produce during this uniquely collaborative program.
“MEAA’s is deeply committed to ensuring our stages and screens reflect the world we live in.
“The Diversity Showcase is one of the many ways we are fostering genuine inclusion within our industry.”
The participants for this year’s showcase are:
Writers: Rhianna Malezer, Suren Jayemanne, Neilesh Verma, Martine Delaney, Anna Miers, and Rafeif Ismail.
Performers: Suren Jayemanne, Neilesh Verma, Nicola Frew, Evan Adam, Tamara Lee Bailey, Leilani Loau, Thea Raveneau, Ani Sidzamba, Lumka Coleman, Stéphanie Denizard, Cassie Hamilton, and Ana Maria Belo.
Directors: Tin Pang, Andrew Lee, Kauthar Abdulalim, Luis Bran, and Rhianna Malezer.